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VA SPOTLIGHT

Brett Valette, PhD


UPDATED...April 2017

This is a series of stories

bringing light to the dark side of the

VA’s treatment of some Veterans

applying for disability.  Whether out

of frustration, desperation, anger, or

‘just to make it right” they contacted me, and together, we fought the injustice. 

These are actual cases and claims. 

I have changed names and identifying

information for confidentiality reasons.


Spotlight March 2017

This is the first in a series of stories bringing

light to the dark side of the VA’s treatment

of some Veterans applying for disability. 


Spotlight April 2017

Claim Killer DBQ Questions.
VA Spotlight is a series of stories bringing

light to the dark side of the VA’s treatment

of some Veterans applying for disability.

Whether out of frustration, desperation,

anger, or ‘just to makeit right” they contacted

me, and together, we fought the injustice.


Click Here To Contact Dr. Valette


Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)

VAWatchdog​

America's Leading Resource For
Military Veterans News & Benefits Information 

Over Ten Years of Service to America's Military Veterans

Since 2005 This Is The Site VA Reads When They

Want To Learn What They've Been Doing

Welcome Aboard!

Veterans Disability Attorney
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Medical Malpractice Attorney
Veterans Clinical Psychologist
Veterans Medical Opinion Doctor
Veterans Law Attorney
Veterans Law Attorney
Veterans Medical Malpractice Attorney
Veterans Clinical Psychologist
Veterans Law Attorney
Veterans Law Attorney


You should consider an IME or an IMO
We've An Independent Medical Examination or an Independent Medical Opinion

will often make the difference when the details of your claim aren't clear.
The physician who conducts such an exam is a neutral observer and an expert in disability medicine.
Click here to learn more about these exams.



The Schedule For Rating Disabilities

Match Your Disability To The Ones You'll

Find In The Schedule To Determine Your Rating


Veterans Administration Disability Benefits

How To Increase An Existing Rating



Do It Yourself

You Do NOT Need A Representative


If you have an existing rating and you believe that the rated condition

is worse than it was when it was rated or if you believe that your rating

is just too low, you must formally file a claim to increase the rating.


Talking with your doctor or other veterans won't get the process started.

You have to submit the forms.


* Determine exactly what your current ratings are before you proceed.


Dig out those original award letters so that you know exactly what sort

of benefits and ratings you have. Don't just guess at it, get the facts.

You may needto check your records at the eBenefits site.


* Look at the ratings table for your existing benefit.


The Schedule For Rating Disabilities

is your guide to what you may be eligible for.

You may learn that your current rating is already at the maximum or that you're

current rating is seriously deficient. You have to research it to know.


* Gather your evidence and records to support the increase.

​If there are civilian medical records, you have to gather those for yourself.

Do not rely on VA to obtain your civilian records.


* Consider having an IMO completed.

The IMO is the most efficient way to provide evidence in support of your claim.


* It's time to file the claim.

​Use VA Form 21-526EZ 

Be as precise as you can to describe just what it is that you want.

Provide supporting evidence.


* Congratulations! You're done.



Proceed With Caution

Any time we ask VA to open our file to make any adjustment, we open ourselves

up to a complete review of all ratings.  Many veterans get an unpleasant surprise

when they discover that their request for an increase leads to a proposal to decrease a rating.

You have an absolute right to be rated appropriately for each disabling

condition you may have incurred during your honorable military service.

If you feel that your rating is not correct for your condition, by all means seek an increase.

Before you do...be sure that you can't lose.


Check your current condition's symptoms against the standards you

find in The Schedule For Rating Disabilities. Match your physical or

mental health status to the ones you find there.

If you are confident that you can prove your entitlement to a higher rating, go for it.

If not, sometimes sleeping dogs are best left to just lie there.



Things You'll Need














Mail your forms, documents
and evidence here...
Department of Veterans Affairs
Claims Intake Center
PO Box 5235
Janesville, WI 53547-5235


Toll Free Fax: 844-822-5246


We recommend that you mail a copy
and then fax a copy!  Yes, it's twice the
work but maybe VA will only lose one
and the other will be processed.
Remember: Use Certified Mail!

Forms to File Claims

VA Form 21-526EZ
For...
Disability Service Connection
Secondary Service Connection

IncreasedDisability Compensation

Temporary Total Disability Rating
 Individual Unemployability
Compensation under 38 U.S.C. 1151
 Special Monthly Compensation
Specially Adapted Housing

Special Home Adaptation

Automobile Allowance/Adaptive Equipment
Benefits Based on a Veteran's
Seriously Disabled Child


VA Form 21-0958 - NOD
​Notice of Disagreement

VA Form 21-534 EZ

Application for DIC, Death Pension
Change of Address​

TDIU Annual - VA Form 4140
Declaration of Status
of Dependents
VA form 21-686c


How To

How To Apply For SSDI

How To Apply For

TDIU Unemployability

How To Use

Disability Benefits Questionnaires

(DBQ's)

How To Apply For A Disability Rating

How To Apply For An Increase

to an existing rating

How To Retrieve Your

Military Personnel Records


Research Your Claim

The M21-1MR
The CFR
TDIU
SMC

The Schedule For Rating Disabilities